Hot Tar

by Debs Brown

The smell of hot tar,
molten pavements; the
sticky hardness marks my
feet with gummy teeth.

Brown creosote stains
into playground fencing.
Stringy paintbrushes
slap fumes up

like bonfire smoke.
Slimy sandwiches –
cheese and cucumber slide
over scabby knees on swings.

Peel away soggy bread,
I pincer the green skin,
wiggling in the air.
Fling it to the birds,

Sam shrieks “Litterbug!”
I know it’ll rot,
flesh on the soil.
Slime apart to be eaten

by stumpy worms,
the ones she diced in two.
But she’s not listening,
she left me for a sticky bun.

I watch kiss-chase,
lose a tooth in my apple as
the tar creeps up my nose,
making everything sour.

Debs Brown believes herself to be the mistress of creativity; residing in Sussex, she thrives on trees, chocolate and board games.

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